Nail Art

Dedicated to the infinite joys of nail art and design: handpaint, airbrush, colored acrylics and gels.


Potent Out of Poland: Paulina Pastuszak & Ilona Musik

When we received e-mails showcasing phenomenal nail art from two different Polish nail artists several weeks apart, we knew we had to share their striking images with the rest of the world. We hope their designs inspire nail artists in our home country of the U.S. and our readers around the globe.


Paulina Pastuszak shines both in the competition arena and in the classroom. She’s been crowned the Munich World Champion in Nail Art and a seven-time finalist in the Polish Championships. As the former owner and instructor at a Cracow, Poland, branch of ABC Nailstore International, Pastuszak shared her knowledge with students, guaranteeing that training was conducted at the highest level. She now works as a representative of Indigo Nails Lab, which provides materials for a range of nail art from acrylics to gels to one-stroke designs and mixed media. She’s done demos at the Beauty Forum and Les Nouvelles Esthetique & Spa trade shows. See more of her work at

<p>Nails by Paulina Pastuszak</p>
You’ve won a lot of nail competitions. What is it about your nail art that makes you a competition favorite?
This is a difficult question, but since I’m also a competition judge, I think I can answer it objectively.  Creativity is important — an unusual approach to the subject is key. But the priority is a good mastery of technique. You can’t win a championship if you’re not sure of your skills and products. Preparation is also important. While I like to improvise, I draw a pattern, preparing the materials and testing how long it takes me to do the styling ahead of time. Finally, don’t forget about the model. She (or he) should be patient, disciplined, and committed. My best model was my husband.

<p>Nails by Paulina Pastuszak</p>
Do you work in a salon too?
You can’t be a good coach if you don’t practice the profession. My salon is called “Fanaberia” (translated to English as a fad or whim) and I do services for hands and feet, plus eyelash extensions. Cracow is a great location because students from all over the world, after training, visit the unique town with pleasure.
<p>Nails by Paulina Pastuszak</p>
What are some of the popular nail styles and trends in Poland?
Fortunately, in Indigo Nails Lab we offer pink-and-whites created in different ways. For example, we can use white gel under the builder gel and can choose from five varieties of white and 11 varietes of cover. For monochromatic nails, I offer over 220 colors. I never work on tips, only extensions with forms, because my clients like a gentle final effect. I do experiment, but only on my own nails.  

<p>Nails by Paulina Pastuszak. Photography by Maria Specjal</p>

Next page: Ilona Musik's nail art

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